Daniel Halliday
Dec 18 · Last update 1 mo. ago.
What does Hungary’s ‘slave law’ mean for European democracy?
This controversial law was passed on 12th December at the end of a long list of authoritarian policy implemented in the country since 2010. This particular law lead to huge demonstrations in Budapest involving protesters and opposition MPs camping outside state television headquarters for 24 hours in subzero temperatures until a list of demands were broadcast, one of which was a repeal of this law. The so called ‘slavery’ law states that employers can demand 400 hours of overtime a year from employees without payment for 3 years to address Hungary’s labour shortage. What effect will such a law have on democracy in Hungary and what significance does this have on democracy in Europe?
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A degradation of Hungarian Democracy
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A degradation of Hungarian Democracy

This law is an attack on worker’s rights and essentially legalising slave labour with such a large amount of forcible free overtime. This law will strip workers of their rights in the work place, destroying work place democracy or any fair say for workers. Workers rights should be a foundation for democracy to be built upon in societies, and removing such rights represents a slippery slope in the degradation of democracy. The president of Hungary Viktor Orbán and his self-proclaimed ‘illiberal’ policies are a far cry from the European ideals of democracy.